Monday, January 26, 2015

Press release for the forthcoming release "Sundogs" by Cabrini Green and HB3:

A study in electronic prog with a touch of ghettotech. Lyrically inspired by a variety of cultural touchstones from the past 40 or so years. The players are Nathan Green, lead vocals and also responsible for the dope beats heard within, HB3, the West Coast bass-playing wunderkind, and the mysterious yet alluring Peppermint, who provides backup vocals that are a little bit sweet, a little bit spicy, and 100 % trill. The tracks are as follows:

Sundogs: A musical romp through the desert southwest with a detour through the ghettos and favelas of the mind. Think of it as an old west crime noir with hints of the great class struggle. The celebration of wealth is a lie that divides. Today’s baller/shot-caller begets tomorrow’s pauper/food stamp-shopper. The music takes us to strange vistas where one can view the elusive sundogs upon every setting sun. The haunting vocal refrain reminds us that deep down we are all sundogs.

Electric Soul: What on the surface appears to be yet another textbook example of hip-hop braggadocio reveals on closer inspection an exploration of reincarnation and the nature of existence not to mention a tip of the hat to the “witch-house” phenomena and world-famous ice-cream-cone-loving rapper Gucci Mane. Besides, what aspiring young buck hasn’t dreamed of being inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame? Perhaps this is the very track that will take Cabrini and HB3 to those hallowed halls. It certainly looks good on the old musical CV and hey if Green Day can make it, who knows?

Biscuits and Hazy: Documents a typical day in the life of Cabrini. A mellow morning and a lazy afternoon by the pool. Days and nights spent rocking out at the various music festivals and events that take place in the self-proclaimed live music capital of the world. Plus a trip to the mother ship to take a dip in the galactic funk, that magical æther that formed the universe out of dust and nothing. All set to the backing of HB3’s space age bass madness.

Can U Fill It?: A certified club banger for the dance hall of the mind. More than just your typical “dis” track where an unnamed protagonist is taken down a peg, more than yet another pæn to the benefits of cannabis, “Can U Fill It?” raises some pertinent existential questions while referencing 8-bit video games, obscure PC function-key shortcuts, and the reproductive habits of certain reggae superstars. Who among us can fill it indeed?

Sunshine Lollipops: Inspiration often comes from the strangest places. This track originated out of a jam session with Austin’s number one improv/experimental collective, Ouiness. The lyrics were developed from this kernel of inspirado and address a wide-range of subject matter from meteorological phenomena to religious pluralism. Peppermint contributes ethereal vocals reminiscent of the best of the goth and shoegaze traditions while HB3 delivers one of his most concise basslines which intertwines flawlessly with the layered snare drum samples. This track has lead single written all over it.

Stanley Pastorius: Following up “Sunshine Lollipops” is a tall order indeed but if any track can do it this one can. Veering into prog-rock territory, the music on this one incorporates in-your-face keyboard riffs, swirling harmonica sounds, and a contemplative keyboard breakdown segment. Lyrically, this track tells the tale of one Stanley Pastorius, the kangol-wearing alter ego of HB3, whose prodigious talent with the bass guitar is matched only by his outsized ego, unwillingness to compromise, and appetite for excess. From Olympian highs to Stygian lows, the life of Stanley runs the full gamut of the music biz from industry recognition to the televised humiliation of losing on an 80’s game show in front of a live studio audience. The music industry is hard, indeed, but we think ol’ Stanley has a comeback in him yet.

Notes and addendum by HB3:

The approach I took when recording the bass parts for our first collaboration, "Real Sh!t," in 2011, was to play the first thing off the top of my head, totally improvised, perhaps listening to Nathan's drum track once -- if at all. Whatever I played, well, that was the song. I wanted to keep some of that approach this time, so, I followed the same practice on "Electric Soul" and "Can U Fill It?" Those tracks are what happened when I plugged in and hit "record."

For the other tracks, I changed it up a bit. I wrote the music for the title track from scratch, composed and revised the bass parts for "Biscuits & Hazy" and "Sunshine Lollipops," and finally wrote the music for "Stanley Pastorius," using a Nathan beat for the middle section.

I alternate styles and tones from track to track, embodying the character "Stanley Pastorius," an amalgamation of the bassists Stanley Clarke and Jaco Pastorius.

Tracks 1 and 3: fretless bass, Pastorius style.

Track 2, 4, and 5: fretted bass, Stanley style.

Track 6: both styles together, fretted through the verses, fretless in the middle. During the fade, both instruments play together.